With a storm front moving through Massachusetts Bay this afternoon, the conditions between Saturday and Sunday of the Sperry Top-Sider Nood Regatta in Marblehead could not have been more different. As the first guns sounded, the rain started to fall and by the third leg of the J/105 fleet’s first race the combination of light air and building chop kept many of the lead boats from making significant gains up the course.
“It made the course very challenging going upwind today,” said J/105 overall winner Ric Dexter. “Our fleet was extremely close, all three top boats were within one point of each other. Fred deNapoli in the second place boat, and Two Feathers [third place] from Dallas are all fantastic competition and inspirational sailors.” Dexter and his crew aboard Circe’s Cup not only won the J/105 class but also the Wilmington Trust leader spinnaker, a new award added to this year’s Marblehead NOOD.
Seemingly indifferent to the difficult conditions throughout the weekend was David Nelson and his crew aboard his Rhodes 19, USA 3172. Not only did they take first place in the Rhodes 19 class, but also snagged the honor of Marblehead NOOD Overall Winner. The top spot earned Nelson and his crew a berth at the NOOD Championship in the British Virgin Islands in October, which will be sailed in 44-foot boats provided by Sunsail.